4.7/5 (3)
7 nights | 22 miles/day
Self guided from EUR € 649
Rider Level: Recreational Electric bike tours Bike and boat tours
4.7/5 (3)

7 nights | 22 miles/day
Self guided from EUR € 649

Rider Level: Recreational Electric bike tours Bike and boat tours

Tap above to jump to different sections of this tour

  • Holland Bike & Boat Northern Tour

    7 night self guided bike tour in Holland

    Nowhere else in the world will you find an area as fascinating to explore as the Dutch Provinces of North Holland and Friesland, two areas rich in tradition, full of romantic fishing and harbor villages, picturesque lakes and expansive North Sea vistas. Over the course of your week onboard your floating hotel, the ship DE Willemstad, you will be able to discover typical Dutch culture in picturesque harbor towns and small villages while you cycle through a flat "polder land," extensively reclaimed over the centuries from the North Sea.

    What you will soon realize is the truth behind the proverb "God created the earth but the Dutch made Holland," such has been the extent of land reclamation in the region you will be cycling through. Since the 17th century in an effort to save disappearing land from encroaching water, protective dikes have been built, low-lying land has been pumped dry and tidal dams have been created in creeks to prevent flooding, with the result that today’s green flat polder landscape is full of agricultural enterprise.

    Given the Dutch love of cycling, the region is crisscrossed with many quiet cycle tracks that stretch from one end of the region to the other. You will be amazed by the beauty of the North Sea beaches, the towering sand dunes – who said there were no hills in Holland! – the extremely bike-friendly island of Texel, the beautiful flat landscapes, small dreamlike farm villages and picturesque harbor villages. During the second part of the tour, you will cross the large lake IJsselmeer to Stavoren in the Province of Friesland.

    Other highlights during your week tour include the open-air museum "Zaanse Schans," the historic city center of Alkmaar and the old harbor cities of Medemblik, Enkhuizen, Hoorn and Volendam, the islands of Texel and Marken and – of course – Amsterdam with its beautiful canals.

    Highlights

    • Zaanse Schans- open air museum
    • Texel and it's beaches
    • Zuiderzeemuseum
    • Historic harbor towns and picturesque villages
    • Amsterdam with its canals

    Learn More

    Learn more about self-guided trips.

  • Traveler photos

    •  (photo by Stephen Graham)
    • A great bike path through the fields. (photo by Ozzie)
    • A lunch stop (photo by Ozzie)
  • Daily program

    Day 1: Arrival in Amsterdam | Cruise Amsterdam – Zaandam
    Embarkation between 2:00-4:30pm in Amsterdam. Take the opportunity to go shopping or explore downtown Amsterdam, world famous for its canals, its quirky "leaning" buildings, museums, the Anne Frank House, the Waterlooplein Flea Market, the Dam Square in the historical center and heart of the city. Welcome meeting, cocktail, and first briefing on board at 5:00pm. During dinner, the boat will cruise to Zaandam.
    Overnight in Zaandam.

    Day 2: Cycle Zaandam – "Zaanse Schans" – Alkmaar (27 miles/44 km)
    The first bike trip of this tour takes you via small villages through the beautiful flat and green polder landscape. The first stop is at the Zaanse Schans open-air museum (free entry) with its traditional Old Dutch wooden houses, windmills and the cheese and clog factory. After this visit you will cycle through the “Land of Leeghwater,” a green polder area between Amsterdam, Alkmaar and Hoorn. Stroll through the former whaler’s village De Rijp and pass by the windmills of Schermerhorn. Your ship will be waiting for you near the historical city center of Alkmaar.
    Overnight in Alkmaar.

    Day 3: Dune tour: Cycle round-trip Alkmaar | Cruise Alkmaar – Den Helder (20 miles/33 km or 25 miles/40 km)
    Today you can discover the beautiful North-Holland Dune reserve. This is a 5,300-hectare forest and dune area with its unique landscapes. The drinking water for almost the whole province of North-Holland is gained in these dunes. After a visit to the beach and artists village Bergen you will return to Alkmaar where you can visit the wonderful city center. In the afternoon your ship will sail over the North-Holland Canal to the navy harbor of Den Helder.
    Overnight in Den Helder.

    Day 4: Ferry to North Sea island of Texel; roundtrip tour from 't Horntje | Cruise Den Helder – Den Oever (your choice of distance: 9-41 miles/15-65 km)
    During breakfast, you'll take a 20 minutes ferry ride from Den Helder to the isle of Texel (ticket included in tour cost), where you can take a cycling tour on the largest of the Dutch North Sea Isles. You will cycle through beautiful natural parks and have the opportunity for a stop and some bathing at the beach. Suggestion: cycle the beautiful “Thijsse-route” (with signposting, approximately 25 miles) through picturesque villages and landscapes and visit the seal sanctuary “Ecomare.” In the afternoon you'll cycle back to Den Helder, and during dinner you'll cruise to Den Oever.
    Overnight in Den Oever.

    Day 5: Cruise Den Oever – Stavoren | Cycle Southwest Friesland round trip (27 miles/43 km or 34 miles/55 km)
    The vessel will cross the large inland lake IJsselmeer to cruise to Stavoren in the Province of Friesland. You can opt for a shorter or longer cycling tour: discover the nature area of Gaasterland or explore a part of the wide lake district, that Friesland is well-known for. You can also combine both options. Night in Stavoren, one of the famous 11 cities of Friesland.
    Overnight in Stavoren.

    Day 6: Cruise Stavoren – Medemblik | Cycle Medemblik – Hoorn – Enkhuizen (19 miles/30 km or 31 miles/50 km)
    Your ship will cross the IJsselmeer again during breakfast. Take the short bike trip from Medemblik along the IJsselmeer coast directly to Enkhuizen, where you can spend the afternoon. Enkhuizen is an old city with many centuries of maritime tradition. The “herring city” boasts a beautiful old harbor, a historical old town center, and the very interesting Zuiderzeemuseum. If you prefer a longer cycling tour, ride from Medemblik to the former Dutch East India Company town of Hoorn, in the 17th century one of the world’s leading harbors. Enjoy your lunch break and make a short stroll in the old city center. Continue by bike to Enkhuizen via some picturesque rural villages. In the evening you can join a short city walk.
    Overnight in Enkhuizen.

    Day 7: Cruise Enkhuizen – Volendam | Cycle Volendam – Waterland – Amsterdam (22 miles/35 km or 31 miles/50 km)
    During breakfast, the ship will cruise to Volendam. Your final day of cycling will lead you through the beautiful area of Waterland with its hundreds of small lakes and tiny canals. Near Volendam you will have the opportunity to visit a cheese farm. Recommended (extra miles) is a detour to the former island of Marken, to continue through the water shaped region of Waterland back to the Dutch capital city of Amsterdam.

    The afternoon and evening are yours to enjoy everything Amsterdam has to offer. If you didn't go for a canal tour on the first day, you will have the opportunity to do so today.
    Overnight in Amsterdam.

    Day 8: Amsterdam: Disembarkation
    After breakfast, disembarkation by 9:30am and end of the tour.

    If guests don’t want to cycle a day (or more) they can relax and stay on board while the ship is cruising. Please note: lunch will not be served on board, so you can enjoy your packed lunch. In case of unfavorable weather conditions, the captain may decide to change the route.

    Surface and terrain

    The terrain is flat and the cycle paths are mostly concrete or paved roads. If guests don’t want to cycle a day (or more) then can relax and stay on board while the ship is sailing.


    Boats

    DE Willemstad
    Full boat details coming soon >

    Poseidon
    Full boat details coming soon >


    How to get there

    Tour start and end
    Nearest airport: Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS)
    Nearest train station: Amsterdam Centraal

    It's a short distance from the train station to the pier via taxi.

    Tips on getting to and from your tour

  • Dates

    • 2022 Saturday departures, April – October

      Off season Oct 08, 2022
      Low season Sept 24 & Oct 07, 2022
      Shoulder season Sept 10 & Sept 17, 2022
      High season May 21, 2022 - Sept 3, 2022
    • De Willemstad

      Apr 01, 08, 15, 22, 29; May 06, 13, 20, 27; Jun 03, 10, 17, 24; Jul 01, 08, 15, 22, 29; Aug 05, 12, 19, 26; Sep 02, 09, 16, 23, 30; Oct 07, 2023

      Season A : Apr 01, 2023 - Apr 14, 2023, Oct 07, 2023 - Oct 14, 2023

      Season B: Apr 15, 2023 - Apr 28, 2023; Sep 23, 2023 - Oct 06, 2023

      Season C : Apr 29, 2023 - May 05, 2023, Sep 09, 2023 - Sep 22, 2023

      Season D: May 06, 2023 - Sep 08, 2023

      Poseidon

      Apr 23; May 07, 14, 28; Jun 04, 18, 25; Jul 09, 16, 30; Aug 06, 20, 27; Sep 10, 17; Oct 01, 2023

      Season A : Oct 01, 2023 - Oct 07, 2023

      Season B: Apr 23, 2023 - Apr 30, 2023

      Season C : May 07, 2023 - May 13, 2023, Sep 10, 2023 - Sep 30, 2023

      Season D: May 14, 2023 - Sep 09, 2023

    Prices

    • Upper deck

      Per person, double occupancy € 799
      Low season surcharge € 150
      Shoulder season surcharge € 250
      High season surcharge € 400
      Single cabin surcharge (1 person/1 cabin)

      Off season

      € 400
      Low season € 475
      Shoulder season € 525
      High season € 600
      Upper deck suite cabin upgrade € 250
      Canal cruise in Amsterdam, per person € 15


      Lower deck

      Per person, double occupancy € 649
      Low season surcharge € 150
      Shoulder season surcharge € 250
      High season surcharge € 350
      Single cabin surcharge (1 person/1 cabin)

      Off season

      € 325
      Low season € 400
      Shoulder season € 450
      High season € 500
      Canal cruise in Amsterdam, per person € 15

      Bike Rentals

      Hybrid touring bike, 21-speed € 85
      Electrically assisted bike (limited number, only on request) € 185
      Bike insurance, hybrid bike € 10
      Bike insurance, e-bike € 25
    • De Willemstad

      Per person/double occupancy Season A Season B Season C Season D
      Lower deck, Standard cabin €689 €839 €949 €1059
      Upper deck, Standard cabin €889 €1039 €1149 €1309
      Upper deck, Suite €1139 €1289 €1399 €1559
      Single use cabin (1 person/1 cabin)
      Lower deck, Standard cabin €1034 €1259 €1424 €1589
      Upper deck, Standard cabin €1334 €1559 €1724 €1964

      Poseidon

      Per person/double occupancy Season A Season B Season C Season D
      Lower deck, Standard cabin €649 €799 €929 €1039
      Upper deck, Standard cabin €849 €999 €1129 €1239
      Single use cabin (1 person/1 cabin)
      Lower deck, Standard cabin €974 €1199 €1394 €1559
      Upper deck, Standard cabin €1274 €1499 €1694 €1859

      Bike rentals

      City touring bike, 7-speed €90
      Electrically assisted bike (limited number, only on request) €195
      Helmet €10

    Included services

    • 7 nights accommodation in climate-controlled cabin in the booked category
    • Full board (7x breakfast, 6x picnic lunch during bike tours, 7x three-course dinner)
    • Use of bed linen and towels (change of towels daily possible); daily light cleaning of the cabin
    • Welcome drink and speech on the first evening
    • Experienced tour leader (multilingual) with daily briefings of the bike tours, some short city tours, during the day the tour leader is cycling the daily bike tour and can be reached on his/her cell phone while guests are able to cycle on their own if they wish
    • Printed instructions and detailed maps for the daily bike tours (1 set per cabin); GPS tracks
    • Ferry to Texel
    • Use of Wifi on board
    • Daily complimentary coffee and tea till 4:00pm

    Special dietary requests may be accommodated; you must include your request at the time of booking. For gluten-free or dairy-free diets, a €50 supplement will be collected on board at arrival.

    Not included, but bookable in advance: Canal cruise in Amsterdam. Ticket for a 1-hour canal cruise through Amsterdam at a special price for our guests: €15 each if booked in advance (normally €20 each). Please indicate in your booking if you wish to book this canal cruise.


    Bike rentals

    Bikes available to be rented (in advance at the time of booking) include:

    • City touring bikes, 7-speed
    • Electrically assisted bikes, limited number, upon request*
    • Children's equipment and tandems, in limited quantities (please inquire for pricing)

    *More about electrically-assisted bikes >

    All above bike rentals will be equipped with the following at no additional charge:

    • Pannier bag

    You can bring your own bicycles (for a small fee and depending on deck space, please contact us for more details). However, the crew or tour operator are in no way responsible for any damage, loss or theft of such bicycles.

    Pedals:
    The bikes will have flat pedals.

    Helmets:
    In the Netherlands, bikers are not obligated by law to wear a bike helmet. Please bring your own – good fitting – helmet. Bike helmets are only available onboard with an advanced reservation. Please book your helmet via our booking form (€10 fee).

    Bike Protection:
    Bike protection can be purchased at the time of booking. You can read more about that HERE.


    Tour Company

  • Route Map

    Maps are for information purposes only and reflect typical routes between overnight locations. They may not reflect your actual route.

    • Stephen Graham 2 weeks ago

      Beautiful area and bike infrastructure

      Fun for experienced riders but also easy for novices to learn the fun of bike touring in such a lovely and historically interesting area. Flat and easy to ride, only a bit of wind & rain sometimes, with great bike lanes everywhere, plus little to carry as the hotel followed us around by water! Only drawback was we would have liked to have dinner in towns and meet locals on some nights, since restaurants were often within steps of the boat, rather than be locked into nightly three-course meals on board as if isolated on the high seas...

      How many tours have you completed?
      3
      Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
      As expected
      Who is this tour suitable for?
      First-time bike tourists, Solo travelers, Families with teens, Families with young kids
      Do you recommend this tour?
      Yes
      •  (photo by Stephen Graham)
      • 5/5 Value
      • 5/5 Included meals
      • 4/5 Bikes + equipment
      • 5/5 Hotels or boat
      • 5/5 Scenery
      • 5/5 Ease of navigation
      • 5/5 Tour documents
      • 5/5 Local tour company services
      • 4/5 Route selection
    • Ozzie July 18, 2018

      A great trip!

      A well organised tour that we thoroughly enjoyed. The crew of De Holland and the tour leader Sandra did a great job..always very helpful and went out of the way to ensure everything ran smoothly. Would be happy to do another bike boat trip.

      What was the date of your tour?
      23/6/2018
      How many tours have you completed?
      1
      Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
      As expected
      Who is this tour suitable for?
      First-time bike tourists
      Do you recommend this tour?
      Yes
      • A great bike path through the fields. (photo by Ozzie)
      • A lunch stop (photo by Ozzie)
      • 4/5 Value
      • 5/5 Included meals
      • 5/5 Bikes + equipment
      • 5/5 Hotels or boat
      • 5/5 Scenery
      • 4/5 Ease of navigation
      • 4/5 Tour documents
      • 5/5 Local tour company services
      • 5/5 Route selection
      • 5/5 Guides (if applicable)
    • 2pedallers July 7, 2018

      A windy but enjoyable ride!

      A good introduction to the history and culture and geography of Northern Holland. Good biking routes, but time constraints and weather impacted our ability to fully enjoy some of the possible outings/stops along the way.

      What was the date of your tour?
      June 16-23, 2018
      How many tours have you completed?
      2
      Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
      Somewhat easier
      Who is this tour suitable for?
      Solo travelers, First-time bike tourists, Families with teens
      Do you recommend this tour?
      Yes
      • 4/5 Value
      • 4/5 Included meals
      • 4/5 Bikes + equipment
      • 4/5 Hotels or boat
      • 4/5 Scenery
      • 4/5 Ease of navigation
      • 2/5 Tour documents
      • 4/5 Local tour company services
      • 4/5 Route selection